Lewis, Tolkien, and the Found Generation

An interesting piece in Forbes on how the Inklings managed to transform the trauma they suffered in WWI into something redemptive, healing, and sustaining for the generations following them:

The lost generation dragged high culture down into nihilism and low culture into decadence, but the Found Generation founded a counter-counter-culture. The novels of Tolkien, and not those of Gertrude Stein, or T.S. Eliot, or even Ernest Hemingway are read widely by the general public (and not under compulsion of class syllabus).The Lord of the Rings was voted most beloved novel of the century by the British public. Lewis has a wide subculture to his name, and there’s serious talk about a C.S. Lewis College at Oxford. That’s because the middle and working classes cannot live on a diet of nothingness, they need meat, and in Lewis and Tolkien, they have been served red beef and strong beer. Loconte has given us a glimpse into the Hell’s Kitchen from which that meal came.

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